Media are mere vehicles.

Richard Clark’s now-famous comment about the impact of computers on learning was that the best current evidence is that media are mere vehicles that deliver instruction but do not influence student achievement any more than the truck that delivers our groceries causes change in our nutrition (Clark, 1983, p. 445). Why has this statement made such a dramatic impact on the field of educational technology? How would you respond to it.

– The truck delivers the groceries to the store, but you pick what you want to buy and eat. The internet delivers the material to your computer, but it is up to you to pick what you want to read and study. This has had such a dramatic impact because it stands by the belief that face to face instruction cannot be replaced. In order to learn the student needs guidance from an experienced instructor. It’s similar to a calculator, it is only as smart as it’s user, if one incorrect button or number is pressed the entire answer is wrong. This also shows the importance of the actual instruction of the lesson. When the calculator can’t be used on the standardized test for the state how will the student know how to solve the problem? Just as the government is trying to fight childhood obesity with attempting to pass new laws and implementing higher taxes, in the end it is the parent’s option what he or she wants to buy to put in their home. This works the same way with computers, you may see it – but do you believe it? What is stored into the student’s brain is what is not only presented to them but analyzed and studied repeatedly.


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